12 Steps to Get Ahead in Business
It doesn’t matter what type of business that you run, if you want to be the best at what you do, you need to work at it. However, there are some steps that you can take to ensure that you succeed that are universal. Here are some of the best tips around for getting ahead in business.
Observe the news
Watching the news might not seem like the best thing to do but it pays to be informed. One of the biggest pitfalls that people encounter in business is the sudden changes that can appear out of nowhere. However, this doesn’t have to be the case as many sudden changes are actually weeks (or months) in the making. Watching the news and understanding how affairs on the opposite side of the world can affect you and your business is one of the most important things that you can do to ensure that you never get caught out in a global catastrophe.
Invest in training
The type of training that you will need for yourself and your staff will vary from business to business, but there are always speculated ways that you can train for your industry. The simple fact is generic and basic training will not cut it anymore. If you are the owner of a beauty salon, you will need your staff to have basic beautician training plus specialised nail or lash training. This applies to many different businesses but the overall goal is to help diversify and specialise how you earn your money. However, on the back of our previous point about bracing for change, investing in vu online graduate certificate in change management so that you are never out of the loop with what can happen.
Learn about social media
Social media has become an important part of our everyday lives, not just part of the internet. Facebook has become a permanent feature with older generations while younger people search out new forms of social media to use. The issue can be learning about all of the different platforms and how to get the best use out of them. If you can, spend some time out of everyday posting on different social media to help your company gain visibility on the different networks. If you can, you could hire a social media manager who can plan and post on your behalf. They can also manage the comments section and answer questions that have been left.
Sometimes, we all see something on social media and we want to jump in and give our two cents worth of cheek. However, as a business owner, you must think bigger than this. Getting caught up in drama can be damaging to your company so stay out of the drama as much as you can. This can be tough if they are using your social media to leave nasty comments about something but always try to rise above it. Besides, getting into petty arguments takes time away from actually working and making money. If you believe that people are using the comments section of your posts to have a fight, delete the post and ban those people. It is not worth getting sucked into and those words can come back to haunt you.
Know your competitors
Unless you have a unique business, you will have competitors. And, it is highly unlikely that you have a truly unique business, even space tourism has multiple companies planning trips into space. So, with this in mind, you should be aware of who is competing for your business. You will need to be aware of everything from their pricing (in order to be competitive) to their customer service procedures (so that you can offer better). The goal is to make your business competitive and exciting for customers. You may want to be better than your rivals, but you need to be different so that you stand out.
A smile doesn’t cost much so don’t forget to add that little extra when dealing with customers. People will always prefer dealing with staff that appear agreeable rather than a miserable one. If you have staff, encourage them to be friendly and approachable so that customers would be comfortable to ask for help. If your staff don’t appear to be happy, you should do what you can as their employer to make them happy to be at work. The same attitude can be applied to social media and online. Always greet your customers with a happy attitude and be ready to help them with whatever they need.
Have a daily routine
If you work for yourself, you might be tempted to set your own hours. And while this is great, if your hours are not consistent, your customers may lose interest. Always open your business at the same time, close at the same time, and never change those times unless you have placed a sign on the door saying otherwise. Having a daily routine helps to send a message to your customers that you are reliablable and are serious about your business. Having a routine is also good for your mental health and helps you to prepare yourself for anything that your work day can throw at you, and this includes getting a good night’s sleep.
Being an eco-friendly business is about more than just social media clout, but it is handy for that too. Going green can have a massive impact on your profit margin as it can help you save a lot of money. There are a variety of ways that you can save money this way, such as upcycling office furniture rather than buying new. Switching to energy saving light bulbs and other products can help cut down on energy bills. It is also important to remember that businesses are losing money for not being as green as they could be as they are losing customers. If you would like to do more but lack the funds, you can apply for grants to help make your building more eco-friendly by installing solar panels. The climate emergency is a big issue at the moment, and everyone needs to do their part.
As they say, everyone’s a critic, and as a business you will receive a lot of criticism. Feedback is a form of criticism and it is important to take it onboard. You might be happy with how things are going, but you receive feedback over the same issue time and time again, you may have a problem that needs addressing. It can be tough to take feedback onboard, but for every terrible bit, there can be plenty of praise. Always remember not to take the feedback personally, and try to do better if you are receiving negative feedback.The customer is not always right but they should be listened to.
Create your online presence
As tempting as it might be to create all of your on;ine presence on social media, this is not a great idea. Of course, you should use social media to your advantage but that doesn’t mean that you should neglect a website. Making a website can be a great way to connect and have a permanent space online for you. Social media can be fickle and you are at the mercy of the platform not to delete your content. If you have a concern about the things you post, you probably shouldn’t post it. However, your website gives you complete freedom and you are incharge of what goes on there. Your website can have anything from information about your business to blog posts about your industry.
Be mindful of your moral compass
We have touched on this briefly in our previous point about being more eco-friendly, but your political and social views can affect your business. We are not saying that you need change for every new hot topic and pretend to agree with everything. However, there is nothing wrong with letting people know where you stand on certain subjects. Some topics are very polarising and you may have people claiming that they “will never use your business again”, but there will always be plenty more people who are happy to give you their business over the same issues. Just be confident about how you feel on certain issues and people who feel the same will support you.
If you are starting off in business, you will probably find yourself trying to make excuses for having issues. There is a difference between reasons and excuses, and this is something that you will discover. There may be a reason for a late delivery but there is no excuse. If you find yourself making excuses for an issue, you might have to look at your attitude. Running a business is hard and there is no time for excuses. Sales need to be made, deadlines need to be reached, and money doesn’t make itself. Stop making excuses and start seeking out ways to help yourself and your business to grow.